Caffeine Addiction is not Adorable

I get that you love your morning coffee. I used to love mine, and then I needed mine, and then I got the flu a few years ago and I didn’t leave my bedroom for four days. I had a hideous headache and a blazing fever. I’m not sure if the headache was from the flu or the caffeine withdrawls. I just know it was awful.

I really resent Starbucks, Peets and the McCoffees of America making coffee flavored milkshakes and getting my kids in the door. Jane is 12 and I had to sit down with her and her friends and explain to them that caffeine dehydrates you and is addicting. I told them about how people can’t function without their coffee and we think it’s cute and funny but really it’s not. It’s a chemical that takes control of your body.

I told them that caffeine is a total assault on your skin (they don’t care that it’s your body’s largest organ, they just know you can SEE it). I showed them all the brown teeth that coffee drinkers have and then I showed them this.

$3 x 365 = $1,095

I told them about caffeine and bone loss, and that their bodies are growing so it’s particularly important to care for growing bones.

I get that coffee is the socially acceptable addiction. I understand that people like to meet for a cup of it.

I just want to be very very sure that my kids are aware that a banana in the morning will give them more energy than a cup of caffeine. 

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Comments 7

  1. Hmm, moderation I say.  It really is an incredible antioxident.  It makes you feel like crap if you drink it all day but there are some upsides to drinking it.  Just make sure you live your life balanced and make up for the water loss.  Alcohol, I’m sure, is 10x worse for us :(

    I drink both.  Glad to see you still blogging :)

  2. I’m aware that there are some who “need the caffeine”. And some days I do. My grandmother was Welsh. As such, she was a tea drinker. A, “come in and have a nice cup of tea” drinker. I started drinking tea when I was knee high to a grasshopper, and to this day, it is my preference. It was very much a social thing, a family thing, sitting at my grandmother’s table with tea that was more milk that tea. And in some fashion, having it still, brings me back to that time, that table… and now I share it every morning with my husband– who has started enjoying it himself. 

    No, not adorable, but social.

  3. I switched from coffee to white tea several years ago, and after suffering a massive chemical withdrawal that sickened me for two days, will never go back. The tea (sometimes green) is amazing–I haven’t had a cold for years. It has caffeine, but at a much, much lower level, and slow release. I don’t think any teenager should get into any of this, though. The brain is still developing and very plastic–synapses still forming, etc. and should be as pure as possible. No tuna, either: mercury is bad for all living creatures. (See Moms Clean Air Force!) Dominique

  4. I had horrible withdraws and ended up in the hospital for a week. ):

    Now I just buy fruits and make a smoothie every morning.

  5. Here in Japan I have seen kids drinking these super-genki drinks.  A genki drink is full of caffeine! It’s about three times the amount of a Red Bull.  I couldn’t believe it.  I was pretty surprised to see children so young getting hopped up on caffeine. Dangerous stuff!

  6. There’s no way I’m going to stop drinking coffee.  I have a cup a day, in the morning, and I like it.   

    My daughters, however, are 15 and 13, and I do not condone them drinking coffee.  My 15 yo doesn’t like it, and makes her own choice to stay away (even in the face of very close coffee-addicted friends).  My 13 yo loves the taste of it, but still has had her own cup exactly twice.  We still go to Starbucks every now and then on the weekend.  I’ll get an iced coffee or a latte, and they will get an iced tea (pomegranate) lemonade or a frappaccino with the cream (non-caffeine) base.  Or maybe they’ll have a hot cocoa. Or a sparkling water from the fridge.   I once made an enemy for life from a kid who I took along with us, and refused to buy her a caffeinated beverage.  “But my mom says it’s okay!”  Her mom later told me, “I let her all the time,” and I stuck to my rule – I won’t buy caffeine for kids.There are way to enjoy the popular culture without plying kids with caffeine.  If I take my kids to eat at a pub or a beer garden, they don’t get to have a beer.

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